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Turn your kitchen into your dream staycation

Want to live your most-loved holiday all year round? Andy Briggs, Head Creative for Optiplan Kitchens, shares how to emulate your dreamiest destinations at home.

Lockdown may be lifting but for most of us, getaways to far-flung places may be a way off yet. As for finding a cute cottage in the likes of Cornwall, there may be a few left for the summer holidays – if you don’t mind it costing the same as a five-star villa in the Maldives (believe me, I’ve tried). But cheer up, there’s another way to get your holiday kicks. Whether it’s the golden sands of Morocco or the stunning landscapes of the British Coast, with a little guidance and creativity, you can incorporate all of your most-loved bits of your favourite holiday destination into the heart of your own home. And the best part? You get to enjoy it every day.

The man of your (kitchen) dreams

Andy Briggs, resident interior designer and Head Creative for Optiplan Kitchens, is not your stereotypical kitchen designer. Rather than encouraging clients to chase ever-changing trends each year, he creates designs that go with your personality and, well, make you feel happy. With holidays and good vibes in mind, Andy’s put together four mood boards: The British Coast, The Mediterranean, The Caribbean and Morocco. Each one offers inspiration on how to take the colours and textures that some of our most-loved destinations are known for, and then refashion them within your own kitchen.

Will you incorporate the rich turquoise hues of the Mediterranean Sea? Or perhaps natural stone inspired by the white chalk cliffs of Sussex? Whatever rocks your boat, this is all about having fun and getting creative, so dive on in.

The British Coast

The calming colours of ocean blue and sea green are paired perfectly in this palette, taking you back to walks along the shore, beneath cloudless blue skies. Natural materials such as driftwood, stone and shells provide earthy highlights, while the white stonewash of lighthouses and seaman’s cottages can be replicated with weathered-looking cabinetry. Use accessories such as cushions, throws and tableware to add pops of pastels from traditional beach huts to complete your coastal look.

The Mediterranean

The bold hues of the Med offer a rich palette to work with. Earthy terracotta tones combined with mustard yellow and a pop of blue can provide a gorgeous canvas for soft furnishings and accessories. Take the classic marble flooring and use marble-effect finishes for the likes of kitchen worktops and chopping boards. With marble continuing as a popular trend, you can source practically anything for the home with this natural stone effect, including dinner sets, soap dispensers and kettles. Interweave all this with one central traditional centrepiece. Within the context of the kitchen, this could be a rustic yet solid wooden family dining table.


Multiple tones of pinks and greens, alongside oranges and blues, are found within Moroccan decorative art. The classic centrepiece here could be a hand-woven Moroccan rug, made using the natural dyes from indigenous flowers, berries and henna. Different shades of pink can then course throughout selected furniture and paintwork. Pearlescent finishes on side table tops and trinket boxes are a popular souvenir from local markets. However, a pearlescent wallcovering on a feature wall or kitchen splashback would be a great way to make more of this beautiful effect and would help to brighten any room.

The Caribbean

The colours of colonial Caribbean decor blend dark with light, creating a flawless and defining palette to work from. Think polished dark wood panel flooring in contrast with matt white cladded walls. Put a spin on this with a contemporary deep-toned wooden kitchen table, leaving the lighter elements (whether whites, vibrant greens or yellows) to present themselves through features such as table linen and accessories. There is no shortage of ways to inject a little tropical styling into your home, perhaps via a selection of wall art or fabrics for window dressing.

For touchy-feely inspo from Optiplan Kitchens, head over to their showroom in Hemel Hempstead, or to find out more, click here

In the mood for more brilliant interior inspiration? Then skip along to our super-stylish Spring Home Special

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